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Bennitt swings into college softball

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The class of 2022 has many student athletes, but only a few have committed to play at the collegiate level. One athlete that has been successful in the college recruiting process is LPHS Softball player Janaye Bennitt. Bennitt has recently committed to play softball at Manchester University.

Bennitt has been playing softball since she was 12 and has continued to stick with it throughout her time at La Porte High School. Whether it was club softball or the high school team, Bennitt did it all, but she never imagined she’d play at the collegiate level.

“It’s been a dream of mine to play collegiate softball since I picked up a softball. I fell in love with it and set goals for myself. I started with making my first travel softball team, then making the high school team and next was college,” Bennitt said.

Manchester started to gain interest in Bennitt at the beginning of the school year at their yearly softball camp and the rest became history.

“In September, I went to a camp where I was able to interact with the team and show off my talent to Coach Emerich and Coach Dzurick. During the camp, I got hurt during a base running drill where I got to speak with the head coach. I emailed her prior to the camp explaining that I was interested in her program so we were able to talk about that more in person and how we could take this to the next level,” Bennitt said.

Though the process of getting recruited seemed easy, it was far from it.

“The recruiting process was very stressful in a way. At first, I wasn’t sure where I wanted to go but I had to keep my options open,” Bennitt said.

Though she had many options, Bennitt gravitated towards Manchester and in the end chose to become a Spartan.

“As soon as I visited campus I fell in love. It’s a beautiful campus, and I felt really at home there,” Bennitt said.

With four more months until graduation, Bennitt still has a full softball season to go before she hangs up her orange and black for black and gold in the fall. She hopes to leave a lasting legacy at LPHS.

“My goal this year is to leave my mark. I didn’t get the chance last year to play high school ball because I was cut. If I get the chance to play this year, I want to make all-conference and just ball out and live in the moment while I can,” Bennitt said.

Along with leaving a mark, Bennitt hopes to make many memories in her moments as a Slicer.

“My favorite part about being on the team was being able to play with all of my friends,“ Bennitt said.

Besides having fun with her friends and teammates and playing on the field, Bennitt has learned valuable life skills from softball that will continue to follow her to Manchester.

“Softball has taught me a lot of things in life. It has taught me time management, respect, responsibility and it has taught me how to have fun but still care of business,” Bennitt said.

Bennitt has many people in her life who have helped her become successful.

“I would like to thank a lot of people. My family and friends, Jodi Bible and Mitchell Starnes, and another person who has helped me and supported me on my journey to be the best athlete I can be,” Bennitt said.

Bennitt has had a positive impact on La Porte athletics and hopes to inspire others to continue their sports career beyond high school.

“I highly suggest emailing college coaches and going to camps and getting your name out there. If you want it badly enough, go after it,” Bennitt said.

Bennitt has been an inspiration not only to her fellow teammates but to Slicers alike. 

 

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